A network has been set up to tackle non-communicable diseases in Southeast Asia , according to Singapore ’s Strait Times.

The ASEAN Non-communicable Disease Network, organised by electronics company Philips, includes health experts from Singapore , Vietnam and Malaysia who will exchange best practices and ideas on how to tackle non-communicable diseases, namely diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and chronic respiratory diseases.

According to the daily, information collated from the network will also be used for a study by the National University of Singapore's Dr Jeremy Lim. The study looks at case studies of innovations in the management of the diseases in different countries.

Research conducted recently by health experts shows that Southeast Asia faces an epidemic of chronic non-communicable diseases, responsible for 60 percent of deaths in the region.

The problem stems from tobacco use, unhealthy diet, and inadequate physical activity. Disadvantaged populations are the hardest hit, with death rates inversely proportional to a country’s gross national income.-VNA